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Tuesday Talk with Dr. Dain - December 8, 2020

Dear Pirate Nation,

This holiday season is a time to reflect on those things in which we are grateful.  Although this year has been challenging, the Piper School District has been and continues to be grateful for each of you and the strength our Pirate Nation has shown.

This school year, I have been particularly grateful for the ability to continue to have students and staff present in our buildings. It is encouraging to walk through our hallways and hear learning coming from our classrooms. To date, the transmission of COVID-19 within our buildings has been minimal, and we plan to offer in-person learning as long as our mitigation efforts are shown to be effective. I especially want to express my love and appreciation to our teachers and building-level staff members; their love and commitment to our students never ceases to amaze me.  They are truly special human beings!

USD 203 continues to interact daily with the Wyandotte County Health Department to monitor data regarding school and community spread.  In addition to our current practices of mask wearing, social distancing, cohorting, and sanitizing, we are pleased to share with you some additional efforts we are making in order to ensure the safety of our students and staff.  On December 7th, we began working with ATS Facility Services to supplement our already spectacular custodial team to ensure that every single classroom and learning space is sanitized at the end of every single day.  Lastly, in working collaboratively with the Wyandotte County Health Department, we again have access to COVID-19 testing from a different lab company with an extremely high track record.  As always, this testing is free of charge and available to both students and staff members. If the need should arise for you to be tested, please contact your school nurse for more information. We believe both of these opportunities will allow us to keep our schools open while simultaneously being proactive in ensuring the safety of our students, staff, and families.

Just a quick reminder that if in the unfortunate case a parent or sibling exhibits COVID-19 symptoms and are waiting test results, other children in the same home need to be quarantined/excluded from school until the test results are received.  This type of vigilant attention to the health and well-being of others keeps our school communities safe! 

Updated Piper School District COVID-19 Data:

 

Students (9/9-12/8)

Staff (8/12-12/8)

Piper Early Childhood

1

4

Piper Prairie Elementary

13

6

Piper Creek Elementary

24

3

Piper Middle School

11

2

Piper High School

22

3

TOTALS

71

18

At the December 14th Board of Education Meeting, we will be explicitly discussing the secondary model that we hope to have available which aligns with the County cohorting mandate for middle and high school students that wish to have the option of attending classes onsite.  No matter the specifics of that model, it is our plan to be able to allow secondary families the opportunity to go remote or participate in an on-site, hybrid model. I will be sharing more information with parents following next week’s meeting.

It is critically important that families continue with the COVID-19 mitigation efforts during this holiday season.  Otherwise, community transmission levels could impact our ability to keep schools open. Our students and staff have been doing an excellent job of keeping schools safe from COVID-19, but they can’t do that by themselves; we need the entire community’s help in order to keep the doors open to our schools. 

Proud to be a Pirate!

Dr. Jessica Dain

Superintendent of Schools